New York is in need of left-handed relief help since Josh Edgin went down with Tommy John surgery, and according to ESPN's Adam Rubin, the club is interested in several Los Angeles and Colorado relievers. J.P. Howell, Paco Rodriguez, and Adam Liberatore are the Dodgers pieces drawing interest, with the Mets also interested in Rockies relievers Boone Logan and Rex Brothers.
ESPN's Mark Saxon reported the Mets' interest in the Dodgers' southpaws. Although the Mets have explored a trade, none of the three are known to be openly available. Baltimore's Brian Matusz has also been connected to the Mets in recent days.
Howell appears to have earned a spot in the Dodgers' bullpen after posting a 2.19 ERA over the last two seasons. He is expected to earn $4 million in 2015, and since the Mets were reportedly not pleased with Matusz's $3.2 million salary for this season, Howell, despite his success, may not be a realistic option.
Whereas Howell's 2015 salary may not make him the most attractive option, both Rodriguez and Liberatore are not due to earn a lot more than the major league minimum. Rodriguez was a Dodgers second round draft pick in 2012 and had a solid 2013 campaign. However, he posted a 3.86 ERA and 2.92 FIP in just 14 major league innings last season, and had difficulty throwing strikes with Triple-A. According to MLB Trade Rumors' Steve Adams, the Mets' new front office is confident in Rodriguez.
Liberatore posted a 1.66 ERA and 1.65 FIP in 65.0 innings with Tampa Bay's Triple-A affiliate last season. In 146.1 career innings in Triple-A, he has posted a 2.40 ERA. Both Liberatore and Rodriguez have tossed 13 scoreless innings of relief this spring.
Rubin also noted that the Mets were "intrigued" by Brothers, who is expected to earn $1.4 million, which may be deemed reasonable by New York. Brothers posted a 5.59 ERA and 4.98 FIP in 56.1 innings pitched with the Rockies in 2014. Despite an inconsistent 2014 campaign, Brothers posted a 2.82 ERA from 2011 through 2013. Logan is Colorado's other left-handed relief option, however his $5.5 million 2015 salary may be too expensive for the Mets.
New York was counting on Edgin to be its primary lefty option out of the bullpen, and could make a deal before the end of the spring.